Poland Restaurant Week
I have just had the opportunity to attend Polish Restaurant Week and decided to share my experience with you. Restaurant Week just took place between the 20th to 31st October 2017 and it is considered as one of the best in Poland. Every year, roughly around a hundred or more restaurants from over 30 cities in Poland, participate in this unique festival each year. It provides customers with an opportunity to try out a three-course meal for just under 50 PLN / 14$ / 12 €.
Started in the year 2014, this past week’s event marked the 10th Edition of Poland Restaurant Week. The participating restaurants are carefully handpicked and are considered to be some of Poland’s finest and most interesting restaurants. It is a celebration of the constantly rising level of the Polish restaurant scene and a unique opportunity to experience the best restaurants in their outstanding, festival edition. The team responsible for the event state-“We are a group of culinary and gastronomical enthusiasts. Our mission is to promote the high level of Poland’s restaurant scene and to support its development by bringing the restaurants closer to our guests with our recurrent and consistent festival model.” Gone are the days of when one would consider that Polish cuisine only consisted of groats, potatoes and meat!
How to book a table?
Since I live in Krakow, I was excited to try out some restaurants here which I had never been to before. I will be quite honest, I am the type who usually enjoys a home-cooked meal any given day, especially when the cooking is done by me. However, what I liked about the concept of this festival, is the abundance of choice. You can not only choose the restaurant, but also the date and time and of course the number of people. In order to participate in the Restaurant Week, one must simply create an account or use Facebook credentials to create one. Then after login in, simply choose the number of persons and the restaurant of choice and the suitable timings and then pay for it online. You have up to 24 hours prior to lunch or dinner to cancel or change a reservation.
Each restaurant offers a three-course meal to choose from, which is perfect as there are two separate menus prepared. So, if you are two people, then each of you can have two different dishes to try out and of course, if you are open to sharing, then you can even share each other’s dishes, just to try it out. Since the festival lasts a whole week, one can enjoy the delights of having a 3-course meal at some of the city’s best restaurants for a fraction of the original price. Your reservation guarantees you a 90-minute fine dining experience. What more could one ask for, considering the normal prices at any of these restaurants will most definitely be on the higher side. They also offer 8th person free, if you book as a large group!
If I could pick just one restaurant!
Since this festival is quite popular, I recommend booking in early if you would like to have a spot on the table. As I noticed some of them were sold pretty quickly. Also as I mentioned above, you have to choose your date and time of preference in advance, since I could only manage on the weekends I booked a table at Edo Fusion Restaurant close to Kazimierz. I was really craving some Ramen or Pho after I saw it at another Sushi restaurant close to Krakow’s city centre.
This restaurant is an ornate, modern spot serving Thai, Korean and Japanese dishes with European, Mediterranean and Mexican influences. They also have a separate Sushi bar, exclusively for Sushi lovers just around the corner. I loved the interiors modern, spacious, greenery everywhere, a modern water
fall wall, comfortable seating and great ambience. What caught my attention was the paintings on one of the walls. There were three paintings, each with the outline of two to four Japanese women in Kimono, but at various historic spots in Krakow. A fusion of two worlds!
First up we were served, Prawn crackers as a starter with some kind of fruit sauce/jam (I am not sure) and it was delicious. This was followed up by our first course. I had the Vietnamese dish- Pho-Bho and my friend the Tempura Moriawase. I really enjoyed the soup, as it was fresh and had a nice clean taste. It is a flagship Vietnamese dish. The meat is long-cooked and served with vegetable broth which includes spices such as coriander, anise and cinnamon, which gives the soup its unique aroma and taste. Served with noodles, blanched beef tenderloin and Won-dum dumplings. The tempura is a mix of seafood and vegetables deep-fried in batter. We enjoyed our first dishes.
My second dish was Beef Satay – slices of marinated beef fried with sugar snap peas, jalapeno peppers and mung bean sprouts in aromatic, spicy peanut sauce. Served with jasmine rice, fresh coriander and cashews. This was my favourite dish of the whole lot. My friend had the Sushi set which included –uramaki sake California 2 pcs, uramaki California 2 pcs, nigiri masu 1 pcs, hosomaki avocado 3 pcs, Futomaki BBQ sake and Philadelphia 3 pcs. I really wanted to taste a new cuisine I had never tasted before and this my first go at Vietnamese and I loved it.
For dessert, we both had Matcha-Tiramisu, a Japanese twist to the Italian Classic, with the addition of the tea. The green tea gave it the bittersweet flavour and it was really good.
Overall I would rate this experience a 7.5 out of 10, as we had a 3-course meal, a starter, the main and a dessert all for a small price. I am already looking forward to the next restaurant week and will definitely try some more restaurants and see what they have to offer.
About Edo Fusion Asian Cuisine:
Edo Fusion Asian Cuisine is, according to many critics and customers, “… the best Asian in Poland …”. The sister restaurant of Cracow, the oldest Japanese Edo Sushi Bar, is the perfect place to get acquainted with the very recently acclaimed Asian fusion cuisine, where traditional dishes and techniques of Japanese, Thai and other Asian cuisines are mixed with flavours known from the rest of the world. “ In addition, the Edo Fusion restaurant is a place where you can try selected traditional dishes from almost all of Asia.
The interior of the restaurant fuses the idea of modern fusion style, preparing guests to appreciate the tastes of Cambodian mussels in lime curry, Atlantic cod in sweet miso, halibut in sake served on fresh cucumber carpaccio and traditional Thai, Pad-Thai pasta. It might be great to discover the “national” soup of Vietnamese PHO-BO or the Korean Kim Chi or the delicious Japanese Udon pasta. At Edo Fusion, one can experience a wonderful journey through the flavours of Asia.
* Restaurant highlighted in the Gault & Millau Yellow Guide 2016
Thank you for stopping by and see you at the 11th edition of restaurant week
Disclaimer – *Drink responsibly and never drink and drive!*